UNIVERSITY RESEARCH COUNCIL MEETING

Dr. George E. Klinzing, Chair

Minutes – Thursday, May 23, 2002


 

The meeting convened at 2:36 pm.

 

Announcements

 

Washington Briefing Book.  The “red book,” containing briefing notes from funding agencies in Washington has now been compiled and printed.  If members are interested in obtaining a copy, please let him know.

 

Science 2002.  Science 2002 is scheduled for September 18-20, 2002; most events have been scheduled for Alumni Hall.  Additional information will be forthcoming.

 

Sigma Xi.  The local group of Sigma Xi was put on “inactive” status this year since no representative attended the national meeting.    Dr. Klinzing is working to reenergize this group and has contacted current members via e-mail to seek their help in identifying strategies to bring the group together.  This group has an annual dinner meeting to induct new members (and is particularly interested in graduate students), as well as to hear a presentation by an invited speaker.  If URC members are interested or know of anyone who is already a member, please let Dr. Klinzing know.

 

Small Grants Programs.  Award letters have been sent to the directors of all the proposals recommended for funding by the URC.  Requests for reviewers’ comments have been received from 6-8 proposal submitters who were not funded and will be sent.  It was suggested that these comments be sent to everyone who submitted a proposal, and URC members present agreed.  Dr. Klinzing will follow through.

 

NSF Budgets.  Results of a national survey indicate that the NSF needs to increase both the size of grant awards as well as to increase the length of its awards.

 

Military Research Security.  The Department of Defense (DoD) has announced that it wants to review everything that has been done in relation to its funded projects, particularly the publishing of results which, for the academic community, may affect their rights of academic freedom.  It was also noted that increased security measures and other restrictions, especially with respect to laboratories and research data, are being added into budgets, increasing requested funding up to 15 percent. 

 

Subcommittees 

 

Dr. Klinzing reported that the policies are ready for submission to Senate Council for approval in accordance with the streamlined approval process agreed upon with Senate President James Cassing, and expects that the Senate will be reviewing all policies in September.  On the Commercialization Policy, Dr. Klinzing has scheduled a meeting with the Senate President to discuss.  The Patent Policy has been modified to include modern electronic components, as well as updated according to current practice, and agreement has been reached for the distribution of resources.  This policy will be sent to the Senate for review and approval.  Dr. Klinzing thanked the subcommittee members for their hard work and diligence and submission of a detailed report that was instrumental in moving this policy forward.  The Brainstorming Committee on intercollaborative research has sent a report.  Although more information is needed, Dr. Klinzing will follow up on several of the ideas presented.

 

In other subcommittee business, Dr. Klinzing noted that next year, he would like to set up a meeting with social scientists that would focus on education and discussed another possible meeting with Taieb Znati and select others.  Dr. Klinzing will also explore the possibility of regional campus members’ ability to attend future URC meetings via telephone/speakerphone, noting that due to time constraints it may be impractical for members to travel to Oakland for every meeting.  Dr. Klinzing asked URC members if there were any issues for next year’s agenda and requested that members forward any suggestions to him directly.

 

Office of Research Report:

 

Operations:  (1) Director Michael Crouch reported on the status of e-proposal submissions sent recently to the Army Medical Command’s RFP.  He noted that task management was intense, and the staff from the six Health Sciences’ areas (MGB, Pathology, Urology, Pharmacology and PCI) cooperated well.  The next round of electronic submissions will involve breast cancer program proposals; he anticipates processing approximately 50 proposals.  He also reported that NIH has announced its plans to make the transition to an all-electronic submission protocol for non-competing continuation applications by November 1.  Group discussion focused on the problems of infrastructure in proposal processing, such as the inability to include electronic signatures, the unavailability of grants management software, and the need for more resources for the Office of Research to conduct needs assessments, as well as additional lead time for compliance reviews.  A suggestion of three days’ prior to due date would be reasonable except for multi-site submissions, and Mr. Crouch agreed.  Dr. Klinzing asked Council members to speak with colleagues and get back to him with comments.   (2)  Mr. Crouch subsequently called members’ attention to the recent (May 20) memorandum from Provost Maher regarding proposal review of applications involving animal research.  Although participation in this process in voluntary for the summer, the experience gained may result in future procedural updates.  (3) The Office of Research recently hosted the annual NCURA continuing education teleconference that focused on compliance.  Approximately 28 people attended the 4-hour broadcast.

 

Funding Notes.  The Office of Research is in the process of completing its preliminary compilation of the FY 2001 annual awards report.  He informed members that total amount of awards increased approximately 10% overall from FY 2000.

 

Policy Developments.  (1) The Public Health Service plans to implement assurance procedures for animals, similar to that currently in place for human subjects.  (2)  A template for stem cell research is being developed that will result in a Web-based faculty-friendly template.  This is a variant of the current forms for Materials Transfer Agreements, but with additional monitoring.

 

Adjournment

 

With the expectation that no additional meetings would be required this academic year (unless there was an emergency), Dr. Klinzing thanked all members for their service this year.  The meeting adjourned at 3:24 pm.